The Greatest Confusion Ever Told

I’m going to continue talking about contradictions in the bible, and the silly excuses that people give to try and correct the “inerrant” word of the world’s longest running game of ‘telephone’.  In this edition, we’ll be talking about the birth story of Jesus. As I’ve mentioned before, most Christians have absolutely no idea what is actually in their bible. So they’re just hanging on what preachers are telling them without an ounce of investigation.  As you will notice, the bible says something completely different than what modern Christians think of the nativity.

So first off, we know for a fact that the four gospels are NOT eyewitness testimonies. This is seriously so easy to tell. You don’t need a PhD in biblical studies or be able to read ancient Greek. You just have to read it. I’ve said this before so I’ll keep this short, but it is impossible for one person to have followed Jesus and his family around and witnessed all the conversations that took place between everyone else in the story. A single eyewitness would not have heard angels talk to Mary and Joseph, Herod talking to his inner circle, Apostles talking to Jesus alone, and Jesus talking to himself in the wilderness. The gospels are stories, not eyewitness accounts.

Also, the writer of Luke specifically says he isn’t an eyewitness, but a recorder of other’s accounts. So there’s that….

So, let’s see what Matthew and Luke have to say about the birth of Jesus.  (Mark and John do not mention the nativity story.)

Matthew timeline:

  1. Jesus born in Bethlehem, where his parents live.
  2. Magi travel from the east, talk to Herod, who sends them to find Jesus
  3. Magi follow a star to a house, Jesus and family are inside
  4. Joseph told by angel to escape Herod in Egypt.
  5. Herod kills every child under 2 years old.
  6. Herod dies, Joseph and family return from Egypt, but fearing Herod’s son decide not to return home and settle in Nazareth instead.

Luke timeline:

  1. Joseph and family live in Nazareth, but have to travel to Bethlehem for a census during Quirinius’ reign
  2. Jesus born, manger used for a bed because no room in town
  3. Shepherds were told by angels about Jesus, and they went and saw him
  4. Eight days after birth, Jesus is circumcised.
  5. Jesus taken to Jerusalem for purification rites, which is by Mosaic law supposed to happen on the same day as circumcision, but apparently was delayed a day or two.
  6. Joseph and Family return to Nazareth.

These two timelines are completely at odds with each other. One has Jesus back in Nazareth growing up after a few weeks, while the other has their home in Bethlehem for almost two years, and then exiled to Egypt for an undetermined time, and then finally returning and moving to Nazareth.

I actually discussed this with a Christian one time that told me that since each is an eyewitness account (which we know they aren’t), they each have a different part of the story, and the actual timeline should go Nazareth, Bethlehem, Jerusalem, back to Nazareth, then back to Bethlehem for a census, then Egypt, and then Nazareth again. This attempt to square the two stories is almost believable, except to follow this timeline JESUS IS BORN TWICE.

Matthew specifically says the Magi find Jesus at a house.  And the bible says the information they gave to Herod about their travel and the star left Herod to believe the child was under 2 years old.  So Jesus would have been a toddler, running around and tripping, instead of lying in a manger.

Quirinius began his rule in 6 CE.  Herod died in 4 BCE.  Jesus was already a tot and living in Egypt when Herod died, which means by Matthew, Jesus was born no earlier than 6 BCE, but Luke has him born after 6 CE.  That’s a 12 year difference at a minimum.  Obviously, at least one of the writers had something completely wrong.  And since neither of them indicated in what year Jesus was born (like everywhere else in the bible where they say “during the x year of so-and-so”), we can fault both accounts of sloppy reporting and unreliability.

Whoever wrote Matthew committed an obvious fraud in his attempt to make Jesus “fulfill prophesy.”  He said Jesus came back from Egypt to fulfill the prophesy “out of Egypt I call my son”, only there is no such prophesy.  The actual reference for this phrase is when God called Moses out of Egypt in Exodus.  It wasn’t prophesy at all, it was a story of an event that already occurred.  This demonstrates that Matthew is not a reliable source for history at all, since he was willing to make up stories to bolster the legitimacy of Jesus.  Matthew’s reported slaughter of all Bethlehem males under the age of two is also made up.

Also of note, Nazareth was settled after the first century, which means it didn’t exist during the supposed time of Jesus.  This means that the bible writers would have known about Nazareth, but Jesus never could have.  And since it didn’t exist at the time, we know both of their accounts are at least in error, and possibly fictional.

So Christians believe the birth of Jesus is the most important day in the world, and is celebrated and re-told every year to great pomp and circumstance.  Yet despite the supposed significance, the little manger sticker people put on their car is completely at odds with the event in the book they claim they got it from.  It is actually two completely different and contradictory stories that chronologically can not be rectified.  They date the event over a decade apart, they invent fulfilled prophesies, they reference major astronomical and genocidal events that nobody noticed, and they placed him in a city that didn’t exist.

The greatest story ever told?  Try the greatest con-job.

The Spartan Atheist

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48 thoughts on “The Greatest Confusion Ever Told

  1. I admire your research! 🙂 Not that it will do any good. Any Christian reading it will just argue that you have it all wrong because you’re an atheist and it takes GOD to open your eyes to the true sequence of events.

    Liked by 6 people

    1. “Who you gonna believe? Me or your own eyes!” – From An American Tale, Fievel Goes West, but applies to this scenario as well. LOL!

      Liked by 3 people

  2. “… it is impossible for one person to have followed Jesus and his family around and witnessed all the conversations that took place between everyone else in the story.” Well, I tried doing it for awhile, but Joseph called the cops on me and eventually had a restraining order placed on me. Said I was “stalking” his family. The bastard. (Another excellent post, BTW.)

    Liked by 6 people

    1. Wow, you’re not only creepy, you’re old! LOL! Thanks, BTW.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Yeah, I’m writing a book called, “Stalking In The Time Of Christ: How and Why It Was Done.” It should be out by Christmas.

        Liked by 3 people

      2. Not the Christmas stocking’! —stalking stalker

        Liked by 3 people

  3. No issues with Jesus being born twice. Even he said ye must be born again!

    Liked by 5 people

    1. I am laughing at my stupidity so thats what that phrase meant the whole time

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Wait until you start getting into the 70+ Apocryphal books that were evidently considered either too outlandish or simply too contradictory by early Christian publicists to make the final grade. These books are G.R.E.A.T. In one, a baby Jesus slaughters a whole gaggle of fire-breathing dragons (yes DRAGONS!). That’s in the 18th Chapter of the Gospel of Pseudo-Matthew; one of the nine so-called Infancy Gospels which detail the early life of a thoroughly odd, utterly ghastly little boy named, Jesus; a boy you seriously, absolutely, positively wouldn’t want as a neighbour. This Jesus is completely nuts. He kills heaps of kids, blinds every adult in Nazareth, and even starts a gang of sycophants who beat up anyone who refuses to worship him.

    Liked by 5 people

    1. Gee … I wonder why that one was excluded. No more ridiculous than some that were approved …

      Liked by 4 people

      1. Right! It means Mathew’s post-crucifixion Zombie Apocalypse (which, extraordinarily, no one in all of Judea seemed to have noticed) was deemed at some point by these same men to be perfectly credible.

        Liked by 4 people

      2. I always wonder about those zombie kings. What happened to them? Where are they now? Did you have to shoot them in the head to kill them? Did they feast on the living? Could they talk? What did they say? I absolutely HATE it when an author tosses in a HUGE plot hole like that. Listen “Mathew'” if you’re gonna add hundreds of zombies to your story, you absolutely HAVE to do something with ’em once you do. Dude just left us hangin’. Bad writing. Mathew, you get an “F”. Sorry pal.

        Liked by 4 people

      3. Now THAT would make for a funny skit.

        Liked by 3 people

      4. I think I’ll write one. 🙂 Funny, in Catholic school. no nun or priest EVER talked about Mathew’s zombie kings. I wonder why? Hmm?

        Liked by 2 people

      5. LOL! And revelations…. how that made the cut, who knows.

        Liked by 3 people

    2. Awesome. I gots ta read me that! Sounds GREAT! Make a great horror movie!

      Liked by 2 people

      1. But it’s a LOVE story!

        Liked by 3 people

    3. Wow now I know which books I wanna read next in my free time. Cheers.

      Liked by 3 people

      1. Start with the Infancy Gospels, they’re a wild ride.

        Liked by 2 people

  5. I love this. Clear and easy to follow. Thanks. I wish Stefan on Arks blog could see this. He thinks the bible proves god is real because it has been around so long and has no mistakes. Hugs

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Thanks, Scottie. Turns out, it’s hard to explain jacked up stuff in a way that’s not confusing! Lol!

      Liked by 1 person

    2. Been following that conversation. What a strange chap he is.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. @John I wonder, is Stefan really asking questions or simply regurgitating what he has been taught in church and religious schools? I can understand asking how science works, I do that all the time because I really want to know. But his argument of authorship and book sales proves the idea of god and the truth of the bible is loony to me. The argument has so many variables and non mystical means to achieve books sales. Such as in a family home people might have one copy of a Mark Twain classic or the Harry Potter series, yet it is common for each family member to have their own bible, maybe more than one. That drives sales, but it doesn’t show a mystical connection to the truth of god or the truth of the book. Hugs

        Liked by 1 person

      2. I’m missing this! Which article?

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Me, too. Where it be at, bro?

        Liked by 1 person

      4. He makes part of it here. He has been in discussion / debate with Ark above. I am thinking he made the total argument in another post and I am looking for it. Hugs

        Liked by 1 person

      5. Now, THAT was entertaining.

        Liked by 2 people

      6. Did you give Stefan the benefit of your divine inspiration? Hugs

        Liked by 1 person

      7. No, I’m gonna go to a pet store later and watch hamsters run on wheel. I’ll get a lot more out of that, I think. 🙂

        Liked by 3 people

      8. The whole thing was left not addressed as I could see because it made such little sense. You either have to be really deluded and deeply convinced to see that as evidence, or you have to be trying hard to get people’s goat. I wondered at the young guys mind set. Hugs

        Liked by 1 person

      9. A lot of the time it seems like he’s practicing Poe’s Law.

        Liked by 2 people

      10. Sad, he seemed to be a smart young guy, but rather aggressive on his dogma as that is the way the young kids are taught these days. I had hoped that he really was trying to learn and expand his understanding. Oh well. Hugs

        Liked by 1 person

      11. Only a complete f**kin’ idiot would do that! 🙂

        Liked by 2 people

  6. I have heard many people explain that the contradictions in the Gospels aren’t really contradictions. Different people have different recollections of the same events because they were humans and humans make mistakes and their memories fade over time. But in the same breath, they say the Bible is reliable enough to be used as a history book. Really? What other history book uses two contradictory descriptions of the same event and claim that they’re both correct? Not only are they both correct, the authors were inspired by God to write down those words. 2 Timothy 3:16 anyone?

    “All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness”

    God inspired different people to write down different accounts in order to help spread the truth. Sure. That makes sense. I mean, who could doubt conflicting reports? Watch a Fox News report on a breaking news story. Then flip the channel to MSNBC. Are the stories the same? Not likely. How about when Trump is the subject? Not even close. Same events. Totally different reporting. Are Fox News and MSNBC both right? Logically they can’t be. That same logic needs to be applied to the Gospels. If the accounts from two writers are at odds when describing the same event, they cannot be trusted.

    Liked by 2 people

  7. Right on! Clearly put.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. What I don’t get are the three synoptic Gospels. Matthew, Mark and Luke plagiarized from each other verbatim in many places, telling the same stories three times! I mean, isn’t once enough? I am quite puzzled why the people who finalized what was going into the official Bible decided to include all three versions of the same events!
    https://historyisfascinating.wordpress.com/

    Liked by 1 person

    1. LOL! You probably know more than I do about it, but what an odd process to arrive at just four. “divine inspiration” my butt.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. There are multiple theories involving who copied whom first, adding to the confusion is some Ur-source called “Q”, German for “Quelle” which means source…

        Liked by 1 person

      2. I tend to go with the (very) general idea that Mark was first, and the rest are just later copies. So it’s really just Mark, Mark edited by Matthew, Mark edited by Luke, and Mark really edited by John. Sound about right?

        Liked by 2 people

      3. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Synoptic_Gospels#The_synoptic_problem
        Here’s where I got my information…. I’m just learning about it too

        Liked by 1 person

      4. Few know this, but the first gospel was the Gospel of Bill. Only a few verses survive, but here’s one of them. Bill 12: 21-22 “And Jesus said unto the Starbucks’ barista, ‘Hey, I didn’t order decaf! I’ve got a sermon to give, and I need to be focused, focused, focused! Gimme what I ordered!'”

        Liked by 4 people

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